At your appointment, your podiatrist will take a comprehensive history to understand how the bunions have progressed, and whether they are painful or not. By observing your bunions your podiatrist will grade your bunions from stage-1 (mild) to stage-4 (severe) and then complete several assessments to determine the quality of movement, the remaining function of the big toe joint and the structures affected. This will lead to a better the outcome with management. Sometimes they will refer for an X-Ray to check for associated degeneration (arthritis).
Treatment modalities for bunions include:
- accommodative and wider footwear
- orthoses – prefabricated or custom-made
- joint mobilisation
- night splints
- strengthening and stretching exercises
If conservative management has been unsuccessful then a referral to a podiatric or orthopaedic surgeon will be the next point of action. Bunion surgery is a quite a complex procedure and definitely isn’t the first line of management!